20 September 2011

Somalia: Puntland President's Meetings With Business People and TFG Parliamentarians

press release

The President of Puntland State of Somalia, H.E. Abdirahman Mohamed Mohamud (Farole), has led meetings with members of Puntland's business community and has received a visiting delegation from the Parliament of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) in Mogadishu.

On Sept. 18, the President met with 20 members of the Puntland business community at the State House in Garowe, primarily entrepreneurs who conduct business in livestock export sector and commercial shipping industry.

During the meetings, President Farole was accompanied by a number of Cabinet ministers including: Interior Minister Hon. Abdullahi Ahmed Jama (Ilkajir); Finance Minister Hon. Farah Ali Jama; Health Minister Hon. Ali Abdullahi; Ports, Maritime Transport and Counter-piracy Minister Hon. Saeed Mohamed Rageh; Livestock Minister Hon. Saeed Hassan Shire; Commerce Minister Hassan Jama Farah; and Education Minister Hon. Abdi Farah Saeed (Juha).

Mr. Mohamud Hayir, chairman of Puntland's Chamber of Commerce and Industry, opened the meeting with introductory statement about the "new risks" posed by Somali pirates. Mr. Hayir stated that Somali pirates have hijacked ships and boats that leave or are destined for Puntland's Port of Bossaso, the State's economic lifeline.

The businesspeople complained about the "new tactic" used by pirates and called upon the Puntland Government to attack the pirates accordingly. The discussion included identifying the role of Government and the role the business community can play together and separately in the fight against piracy, including public awareness campaign, enhanced security measures and ways to establish alternatives to piracy.

Meeting with TFG Parliamentarians

President Farole received a 10-member visiting parliamentary delegation from the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia. The discussion covered a range of topics, including TFG-Puntland relations which are now improving and the current security developments in Galkayo, Puntland's gateway to southern Somalia.

The TFG parliamentary delegation includes: MP Mohamed Abdi Yusuf; MP Barre Ugas; MP Hassan Abshir Farah; MP Ali Ismail Abdi Giir; and MP Abdirashid Irro.

The visiting delegation briefed the President about the purpose of their visit and their intention to join the ongoing dialogue process in Galkayo. Earlier this month, Puntland government forces launched a counter-terrorism operation targeting Al Shabaab extremists hiding out in Galkayo. More than 60 militants were killed and 22 arrested during the two-day security operation.

The TFG parliamentarians discussed with Puntland leaders the possible role they could play in the ongoing dialogue process that aims to isolate the terrorist group from local affairs. Later, the President hosted an honorary dinner for the visiting delegation.

Communications Office

The Puntland Presidency

Puntland State of Somalia

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